476 - An audit to assess the effectiveness of remote antibiotic prescribing during the COVID-19 pandemic
N Sethi AJ Booth
Presented by: Neel Sethi
Cardiff Dental Hospital
Introduction: On the 23rd March 2020, Wales entered the red alert phase of the COVID-19 pandemic. With the cessation of routine dental care, the University Dental Hospital became the main urgent care Centre in Cardiff, providing emergency dental treatment. In order to minimise patient contact during the COVID-19 pandemic there has been a necessary increase in remote antibiotic prescribing for the management of dental emergencies. This audit aims to investigate whether antibiotic prescriptions were prescribed appropriately and whether they were effective in preventing the need for a face-to-face appointment. Methods: A retrospective audit analysing the records of the first 121 patients to receive a remote antibiotic prescription for the management of a dental emergency, since the Wales red alert phase of COVID- 19. Results: Of the patients requiring antibiotics, the majority were prescribed amoxicillin (61%) or metronidazole (36%) and given a five-day course. The prime documented reasons for prescriptions were facial swellings, dental abscesses and pericoronitis. No justification for the antibiotic prescription was documented for 16% of patients. Of the 121 patients involved in the audit only 19 went on to require a face-to-face appointment. 37% of the patients who required a subsequent face-face appointment, did not have a clinically justifiable reason documented for the initial antibiotic prescription. Conclusion: This audit indicates that for future remote prescribing, clinical record keeping needs to improve. This audit also highlighted the importance of only prescribing antibiotics when clinically justified even during a pandemic. The results indicate that remote antibiotic prescribing can reduce the requirement for face-to-face appointments, although the audit only covered a sixteen-day period and further long-term data needs to be collected.
Consent Statement: There are no details on individual patients reported within the abstract.